5.3/10
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68 user 63 critic

Once Upon a Time in Venice (2017)

Not Rated | | Action, Comedy | 16 June 2017 (USA)
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A Los Angeles detective seeks out the ruthless gang that stole his dog.

Director:

Mark Cullen
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3,600 ( 52)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce Willis ... Steve Ford
John Goodman ... Dave
Jason Momoa ... Spider
Emily Robinson ... Taylor
Jessica Gomes ... Nola
Kaleti Williams ... Manu
Myles Humphus ... Tui
Famke Janssen ... Katey
Thomas Middleditch ... John (as Thomas Middeditch)
Maurice Compte ... Oscar
Stephanie Sigman ... Lupe
Adrian Martinez ... Tino
Ken Davitian ... Yuri
Victor Ortiz ... Chewy
Adam Goldberg ... Lew the Jew
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Storyline

Steve Ford (Bruce Willis) is a down but not out L.A based Private Investigator whose professional and personal worlds collide after his loving pet Buddy is stolen by a notorious gang. A series of crazy circumstances find him doing the gang's bidding, while being chased by two vengeful Samoan brothers, a loan shark's goons, and a few other shady characters. They say a dog is a man's best friend, and Steve shows how far a man will go to be reunited with him. Written by https://teaser-trailer.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Hang together or die alone. See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Site [Japan]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 June 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Untitled Detective Comedy See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$855,888
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Famke Janssen's first brush with co-star Bruce Willis occurred when he asked her to audition for Hudson Hawk (1991) after having seen her in a "Pantene" hair product commercial. She failed the audition. See more »

Goofs

After the talk with Lupe in her car, in the next shot of night city, the traffic is moving backwards. See more »

Quotes

Spider: I want my shit back!
Steve Ford: I want my dog back.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the middle of the credits, there is a small cut-scene where John (Thomas Middleditch) tries to free himself by rocking the chair that he's tied to but instead falls down. See more »

Connections

References Easy Rider (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

A lo Caliche
Composed, written and performed by Norbert Galouo and José Miguel Ortegon
Performed by Sr Ortegon
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A film that should have been a fun crime caper is weighed down by dull-as-lead directing.
14 July 2017 | by LloydBayerSee all my reviews

80s action icon Bruce Willis makes an average of four films a year. That is twice more than what buddy Stallone does yearly. Trouble is, these films are either poorly marketed or badly written or Willis is tasked with supporting roles opposite new actors in lead roles. Which is why Once Upon a Time in Venice has potential but how well it performs will be anyone's guess. There are lots of established actors along with Willis in an interesting setup that resembles a cross between a Guy Ritchie and Quentin Tarantino film. Playing a retired cop turned private investigator (Moonlighting anyone?), Willis plays a loner whose dog is kidnapped by petty criminals. To get his dog back, Willis' Steve Ford must navigate through a series of heists and dodgy characters, including loan sharks and dimwitted gangsters.

It's a film that sounds very familiar and doesn't require a whole lot of thinking to sit through. But as an action-comedy, Once Upon a Time in Venice is a misfire that should have gone straight to streaming video, or the type of film you watch in a hotel room before a flight. There are moments that are supposed to be funny, like Ford's best friend (John Goodman) going through a divorce, or Ford trying to infiltrate a gangster hideout (inaudible mumbling from Jason Momoa), but there's something missing. There are other popular actors too, albeit shoehorned in bit roles that never add up to the overall story.

Debut director Mark Cullen has a long history writing for TV and it shows. Most scenes in the film feel disjointed or like skits at best. At worst it feels like the script was filmed soon after first draft. That's a shame because this film had all the juicy ingredients for a fun crime caper along the likes of Snatch or Jackie Brown. Instead, the film is weighed down by dull-as-lead directing that even John McClane wouldn't shoot his way through. Speaking of Willis, and at 62, there are still plenty of good films he can make as long as the choice is right. Let's just hope Willis doesn't disappear down the rabbit hole like Nic Cage.


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